US May Approve Pfizer Vaccine Booster For All Adults This Week

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The Food and Drug Administration plans to allow three doses of Pfizer’s coronavirus vaccine to be administered to all U.S. adults this week, the report said. New York Times and NBC News, which would significantly expand eligibility for booster shots.

Main facts

  • The agency could give the green light to the recall administration of the Pfizer vaccine to all adults, thereby expanding access beyond the elderly and high-risk individuals currently entitled to receive an additional dose of Pfizer, the Times and NBC, citing anonymous sources.
  • Pfizer asked the FDA to expand eligibility for booster injections last week. The FDA plans to authorize the booster injections without consulting its independent advisory committee, a panel of experts that has spoken out on some of the agency’s previous decisions regarding the authorization of Covid-19 vaccines, according to the Times.
  • Forbes contacted the FDA and Pfizer for comment.

What to watch out for

If the FDA approves the extension of the booster injections, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) should then look into the matter. An independent group of CDCs, which issues non-binding recommendations, is to meet.

The context

Federal authorities have cleared recalls for all three Covid-19 vaccines, but eligibility varies. Anyone who has received the single injection vaccine from Johnson & Johnson can receive an additional dose, but boosters for the vaccines from Pfizer and Moderna are only allowed for the elderly or adults at increased risk of Covid-19 in because of their job or an underlying health problem. In September, the FDA advisory committee decided not to recommend Pfizer’s booster shots for anyone aged 16 and over, arguing that the vaccine is still very effective against serious illness and death. However, some board members said last month that they could support expanding eligibility to low-risk groups, in an effort to reduce the risk of infectious breakouts, NBC News noted.

Important figure

30.7 million. That’s the number of Americans who have already received a booster shot of the Covid-19 vaccine, or 15.7% of the nation’s fully vaccinated population, according to CDC data.

Surprising fact

Several states have themselves expanded eligibility for booster shots, indicating that all residents are allowed to take an extra dose of the vaccine. Colorado Governor Jared Polis signed an executive order last week saying everyone in his state is at high risk of Covid-19, and New York City on Monday asked health care providers to do not refuse any adult who requests a booster injection.

Article translated from Forbes US – Author: Joe Walsh

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